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Special Report With Bret Baier

News/Business. Bret Baier. (2011) New.

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Boehner 35, Washington 9, Bret 7, Jay Carney 6, Us 4, Obama 4, United States 3, Oregon 3, Wu 3, At&t 2, John Boehner 2, David Wu 2, Newell 2, Mexico 2, Harry Reid 2, Michelle Obama 2, Pergram 1, Ut 1, Grapevine 1, Anders Breivik 1,
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  FOX News    Special Report With Bret Baier    News/Business. Bret  
   Baier.  (2011) New.  

    July 26, 2011
    3:00 - 3:59pm PDT  

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happen. thanks for watching see you tomorrow. >> enjoy your smokin' hot wife. ♪ . >> bret: one week until the debt deadline. we have team coverage brit hume's analysis and jay carney. the operation of fast of furious is under the gun on capitol hill and for the second time in five weeks, a congressional democrat resigns. live from our studio in washington, this is special report. good evening, i'm bret baier, we're just a week away from bumping our collective heads against the federal debt ceiling according to the department. and lawmakers continue to argue how to avoid it and others warn against the dire consequences of failure and brit hume will handicap the final days of the battle and
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what the president is doing and not doing. we begin with mike emanuel on a busy day for lawmakers and switchboard operators. >> good evening, the white house today used a word that president obama did not use in his address to the nation. veto. this, has republicans are searching for the vote to pass speaker boehner's debt plan. >> phones have been ringing off the hook in offices on capitol hill the day after president obama encouraged americans to make their voess heard on the debt crisis. >> good afternoon, bill nelson's office. >> the morning after a broadcast war of words with the president, speaker john boehner continued selling the merits of his plan, designed to cut 3 trillion dollars in spending and more. >> it has a real process for cutting spending before the end of this year, and it provides for, i think, the best effort to get a balanced budget amendment enacted into the constitution. >> still, as the house rules committee prepares the boehner plan for a vote.
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it's not clear if the speaker will have enough to pass it. and recruiting g.o.p. votes with this pitch. >> in this bill you have a vote for a balanced budget a set time in the future and we're also going to have one this week. we will not give up that fight. >> and that fight would be an uphill one in the senate. >> democrats will not vote for it. >> it's dead on arrival in the senate. >> topped off by today's white house threat, quote, if the boehner bill is presented to the president. the president's senior advisors would recommend he veto this bill. senator majority leader harry reid has his own plan that would increase by 2.4 trillion dollars cutting spending by 2.7 trillion dollars. reid suggested his proposal had won approval from a key constituency. >> rating agencies said as late as last night that the plan that i introduced will not cause a downgrading of our credit. the one the republicans have introduced will. >> but a spokesman for standard & poor's tells fox, quote, s & p has been very clear not to endorse any
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particular plan proposed, nor have we commented on any. late today the nonpartisan congressional budget office scored the boehner plan satisfying it would reduce deficits by about 1.1 trillion dollars between 2012 and 2021, that is discretionary spending. there's also another part of the plan which is not scorable at this point. bret. >> bret: mike, thank you. president obama made his pitch of course monday night. exactly what was he pitching? it's not really clear. chief correspondent ed henry has that part of the story. >> good evening, bret. top aides say what he was pitching was a compromise between the boehner and reid plans and they insist that the president has a specific plan on the table, but in fact, a lot of those details are still murky, even as some of his top aides warn, we may now be on the edge of a financial depression. >> it was a prime time address to push an approach, not a plan. >> if you want a balanced approach to reducing the
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deficit, let your member of congress know. if you believe we can solve this problem through compromise, send that message. >> note, the president did not urge americans to support a specific obama plan. so, today, republicans pounded away. >> he wasn't elected to talk about the united states, he was elected to lead it. >> president on why the president does not have a plan on the table. spokesman jay carney insisted otherwise. >> why didn't he say last night. here are the nine things, here are the numbers and what i want to do on taxes and say, call your congressman with this. and the fact is, you address the nation only so often on prime time and the president has been out here with an unbelievable amount of regularity and talking to you and talking to the american people throughout this process and the detail was there. >> while the president has not publicly released anything on paper. he and his aides have voiced support for over 1.5 trillion
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dollars in domestic spending cuts and 400 billion dollars in pentagon cuts. but other key details, such as medicare and medicaid are fuzzy. >> and what are your savings on entitlement reform-- >> and in fairness white house aides say that the strategy has been if they got too specific critics would tear it apart. that may have been the case early on. and dan pfeiffer going so far as to telling news that the america issen 0 the verge of an unprecedented financial storm. >> one that could potentially put us back through the depression, because the house republicans, led by speaker boehner are unwilling to compromise one inch. >> now, some of the aides to speaker boehner believes there is wiggle room in the president's veto, legislation, says that his advisors would recommend a veto, didn't say in fact there was a veto threat. a top official told me it's unequivocal, he would veto, et
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cetera only got a short term debt ceiling. the president doesn't like that, it would replay the debate in a few months. the bottom line, if it's the end of the week, they may try any of these, may come back. >> bret: chief white house correspondent ed henry on the white house lawn. thank you. we're in the final of this horse race, senior analyst brit hume is here to tell us. >> hello, bret. president obama is in serious trouble and he knows it, that's why he's eager for a grand bargain on deficits and debt that would at least get that issue off the table through the election. considering he originally proposed a do nothing budget back in april, one of the debt ceiling increase with no spending cuts he's come a long way. while he was still talking about tax increase last night, his support for the harry reid plan which has no taxes means he's given on that as well. the republicans are winning, but there's still a significant chance they'll blow it and lose in the end. there's only so much a political party can do when it
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controls only one house of congress. it can block many things, but it can't enact anything without the concept of the senate and the signature of the president. the last time a new republican congress forced a showdown with a democratic psident that led to a government shutdown, the public was outraged and republicans got all the blame. that was 1995. house speaker john boehner remembers it well and he's trying to get all he can without forcing a shutdown, which would be much broader and politically damaging than the one 16 years ago, but dozens of his rank and file members say they will dessert him on his latest plan, which is tough enough given a veto threat, but not enough to shut it down. they're playing with fire, bret. >> bret: so in your estimation, how does it play out if they don't pass the boehner bill. >> even if they pass the boehner bill and particularly if they don't. what will happen next, the senate will take some kind of action, presumably on something like the reid plan like we've seen it. that would get sent to the
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house and would be faced with accepted or likely shutdown. now, if it gets back to the house, boehner would only need if, he was willing to support that to try to protect his members from some calamity, about 40, 50 republican votes to pass it, with democratic votes, and these tough guy house republicans who think they're going to win on this, this way, could end up getting far less than if they stuck with boehner e politically challenging for boehner down the road. >> it would, on the other hand not as challenging as it would be for boehner and all the house republicans if there's a shutdown if the public felt the same way as 16 years ago and absolutely hated it. >> bret: brit, thanks. my interview with jay carney. and stocks fell, dow lost 91 1/2, s&p 500 dropped 51/2, the nasdaq gave back three 3. the effort to get back to the operation that put guns in the hands of criminals resumed on
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capitol hill. william la jeunesse, whether that effort was successful. >> this is one of the most shameful moments, i think in our government's history. this is one of the saddest days in my six months in congress. >> looking for answers and accountability members of congress got little of either tuesday in their fast and furious investigation. >> special agent newell, what were you thinking? i think that's what we're all scratching our heads about here today. >> this is the moe, curly and larry show, we're looking for larry. are they lying or are you lying? >> sir, this investigation we did not let guns walk. >> you're entitled to your opinion know the to your facts. >> agent in charge william newell repeatedly evaded questions. >> how many hundreds or thousands of weapons did you allow to be purchased knowing that they were going to mexico? >> sir, the purchase was being done by a criminal organization, a large-- >> but you facilitated it, you allowed it. >> the goal of the investigation was to disrupt this. >> he insisted he didn't let
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the guns cross the borders, documents show they did. he claims his agent tracked them when they didn't. and informed of the program in mexico, they testified he did not. why the widespread investigation was initiated and why it continued. >> i cannot believe that someone in the a.t.f. could so carelessly let the weapons get in the hands of criminals. >> the cartels-- >> that's insane, inconceivable, you would never think that because a.t.f. does not do that. >> of some 2000 guns sold, mexican police recovered 141. 122 found at crime scenes. and important in terms of who know what when, under questioning, newell admitted sharing information about kevin o'reilly, director of intelligence at national security council. chaired by the president and operates out of the executive office and also lane brewer,
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head of the justice department's criminal division and right-hand man of general erik holding received a detailed briefing and slide show of fast and furious more than a year ago. after the operation sold more than a thousand weapons. bret. >> bret: we'll continue to follow it, thank you. mcdonald's gets rare praise from first lady, michelle obama. we'll tell you in the grapevine. and the congressman in this familiar photo is calling it quits. [ barks ] ♪ [ cat meows ] ♪ [ whistles ] ♪ [ cat meows ] ♪ [ ting! ] [ male announcer ] travelers can help you protect the things you care abt and save money with multi-policy discounts. are you getting the coverage you need and the discounts you deserve? for an agent or quote,
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. >> bret: e the lawyer for the man who confessed to friday's twin terror attacks in norway says his client asked him how many people he killed. the attorney says he did not answer the question from anders breivik, accused of killing 76 people. the lawyer also says he believes that breivik is insane. a democratic lawmaker with a history of erattic behavior
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has been forced to resign. in the latest sex scandal to hit congress. correspondent shannon breen, what convinced david wu to quit. >> saying the time has come to leave washington embattled democrat, david wu, of oregon a decision to resign. motivated from a significant push from senators murkily and widen. and an after wu did not return their calls, his chief of staff notified they would republican call for his resignation. the statement read in part. accusations against david wu are both jarring and exspgs nahle serious. we believe exno longer be an effective representative for constituents and should in the best interest of oregon step down. wu did confide in fellow house members after allegations surfaced he engaged in an unwanted sexual encounter with a teenager who graduated from
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high school last year. after reportedly telling some of his staff the encounter was consensual. his colleagues were discrete. >> i know he's got two small children so i was concerned that they're good. >> citing the well-being of his children. wu says in a statement, i cannot care for my family the way i wish wliel serving in congress and fighting these serious allegations. i therefore resign acceptance on the resolution of the debt ceiling crisis. with that, he could be in washington for a while and as long as he's a member he could be subjected to a possible investigation by the house ethics committee. nancy pelosi referred the allegations against wu to the committee yesterday. in the meantime, oregon's governor is prepping for a special election to fill wu's seat when he finally does step down. congressman who chaired the committee praised wu's
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decision to resign and says he's confident democrats will reattend his seat occupied by a democrats since 1975. shannon bream, fox news. >> bret: up next, my interview with white house press secretary jay carney. during the break, for a report on proposal in san francisco that would prohibit landlords from discriminating against convicted felons.
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>> the ongoing debate over the debt ceiling looks like it may go down to the proverbial wire. that means there will be plenty of questions for this man. white house secretary jay carney, welcome him to special report for the first time. >> thanks for having he moo--
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me, i'm glad to be here. >> bret: the administration put out a policy on the newest bill out beauty my speaker boehner. if it's presented to the president. president's senior advisors would recommend that he veto this bill. >> right. >> bret: so will the president veto this bill if it makes it to his desk. >> a statement of administration policy is a procedural step taken in a many cases when a bill is presented in the house or the senate. and that language is language that's frequently used in terms of recommending a veto for the president, by a senior advisors. the chief of staff has said on sunday. the president would veto this bill, bret, but you know, it's really moot. we're beyond that discussion because that bill will not and could not pass the senate, so it won't get his desk in the oval office. so the question of veto and not veto is beside the point. what has to happen, is we have
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to have a bipartisan compromise. something that can pass both the house and senate with republican and democratic votes. >> bret: but you did issue a statement of administration policy on the cut, cap and balanced bill that got out of the house and you said this, if the president were presented this bill for signature, he would veto it. and cut cap and balance, as you know, has been brought up for debate in the senate. there's a difference in language. i don't know if we're parsing words, but will the president veto the bill if it makes it to his desk, the one that's currently debated in the house? >> all i will say, numerous occasions where language that we use today is used. and we've used it again today. the chief of staff to the president, bill daley said on sunday, the president would veto it. >> bret: that was before boehner put out his new proposal. >> bret, we could spend all the time talking about this. >> bret: that's fine, but you're saying veto-- >> that this bill is unacceptable, it would leave
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the cloud hanging over our economy, the uncertainty created by the kind of circus that we've seen, in the debate over this. and leading up to august 2nd deadline on the need to make sure we fulfill our obligations and don't default for the first time in history. and doing it again, in five or eight months, is an incredibly bad idea that will only lead to having that uncertainty hurt our economy further into the future. that's why we oppose it. >> bret: you said today at your briefing, that it is a republican talking point to say the president needs to layout his plan. how about this. >> and what-- >> what about the president's bottom line? if you phrase it that way? what has to be in this deal for the president? you know, originally it was the president had to have tax revenue in there or tax increases, the two plans on the table currently, neither of them has that. >> sure, well i can address that. what he have' said on numerous occasions and the president has said, we have always believed that the biggest possible deal is the best
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outcome because nothing is easy here. short and small deals, not easy, or rather, small deals not easy so you might as well go for something big that can be a game changer in temps of reducing our deficit and long-term debt. >> bret: and you still think that something big can happen. >> we do still believe that something big can happen, precisely because doing something big in many ways is just as harded as doing something small. we've said we could fall short of that goal. it may not be achievable. we could in the aftermath fight for something significant and tax and entitlement reform. and we would set something out as long as it ensures that the cloud hanging over the economy is removed and that we lift the debt selling for a substantial period of time to make sure, the uncertainty that that creates doesn't continue to stay with us and that it still achiefs significant deficit reduction. that's not an ideal outcome, but this president made it clear he's not holding out for
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perfections, and he understands that no party to these negotiations will get everything he or she wants. >> bret: you say the president still thinks it's possible. why then did four months ago, did you say this. >> we believe we should move quickly to raise the debt limit and-- >> a clean bill is without tax revenues or anything, it's not big at all. >> bret, you know, that certainly the link between raising a debt ceiling and a deficit reduction package was not one we made it was insistence by republicans in congress, we did not believe that was necessary because we thought we might end up in a situation that we have right now. however, it did create a unique opportunity to achieve significant deficit reduction. faced with the reality that that linkage was made and it wasn't going to change, we decided that this was the time to press for exactly that. that's why we had negotiations led by the vice-president. with house majority leader eric cantor that was very
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productive. produced a lot of overlap in terms of agreement on substantial cuts and discretionary necessary spending and why the president was having private negotiations with the speaker of the house and bret, they came very close and when it comes to the whole issue, where is the president's plan? as the speaker knows and i'm sure there's reames of papers in his office representing the proposals and counter proposals he and the president went back and forth on, that deal remains possible. when the speaker walked away from the table, they were very close. not there, but very close and the issues between them, that divided them could be resolved and that will result in a bipartisan compromise with votes from republicans and democrats that would achieve significant deficit reduction. on the order of which we've been talking about you will an along, 3 to 4 trillion dollars over ten years. >> bret: last thing, jay. you say they were close. to hear the republicans tell it, speaker boehner was already up to 800 billion dollars in actual tax revenues, the president came back and wanted 1.2 trillion.
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and that's where it broke apart? >> well, here is the thing, there's no question in the process of negotiations, you know how these things work, the tough issues for each party, entitlement reform for democrats making tough choices on extracting savings from some of those entitlement programs, very tough political issue for democrats, the president was willing to go there. as those numbers went up, in the name of balance, the president sought more significant revenues, to increase the overall size of deficit reduction, but at no time did he issue an ultimatum. in fact, he said if the 400 billion is not something you can do, mr. speaker, let's continue to talk and let's look at ways to reduce that and make other changes and reach a deal. because a deal remains possible. a deal remains overwhelmingly what the american public wants. what the americans of all political stripes want. republicans, independents and democrats. >> bret: you say a bottom line for the president is no short-term deal. >> we think that's absolutely vital because the kind of chaotic situation we have right now with a lot of
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uncertainty created about whether or not the united states will, for the first time in its history, default on its obligations, that that should not be perpetuated. it won't be good for the economy. it will a drag on growth and a drag on job creation and we believe that nobody in washington wants that. >> bret: this thing gets done? >> oh, i think it does. we remain confident that sanity will prevail. that everyone here recognizes that the stakes are too high to play chicken with our economy and in the end, we will get a compromise. >> bret: jay, thanks very much for the time. >> bret, thanks for having me. >> bret: some food for thought next in the grapevine, as ronald mcdonald gets some props from the first lady. d ce has a best-in-class driving range of over 500 miles per tank. so you can catch morning tee time in pebble beach and the afternoon meeting in losngeles all without running out of gas. st make sure you don't run out of gas.
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>> and now, some fresh figures from the political ape vivin grapevine. the u.s. government funded more than 90 million in grants from china, since 2003. the national institutes of health sponsored public research projects there, on such things as acupuncture and sexually transmitted diseases among prostitutes. a conservative group wants congress to cut such funding, but researchers have written letters to federal appropriators asking them to keep funding nih grants and leave politics out of the review process. kids will get more than a toy
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surprise in happy meals come january. mcdonald's will be putting in a half order of apples in every child's meal along with a half order of french fries, as part of a broader health push. customers will still be able to order a full portion of either item, but the fast food giant says only about 11% were ordering apples on their own. and mcdonald's insists it's not buckling to pressure, even as the restaurant industry takes some of the blame for skyrocketing childhood obesity rates. first lady michelle obama praised the changes as continued progress. mrs. obama can count the happy meal change as a victory, but the rest of the white house is lagging in a program to collect healthy food for the needy. the feds feed families campaign has a goal of collecting 2 million pounds of food from federal workers for area food banks. however, the executive office of the president ranks 27th out of 36 agencies, it has collected 332 pounds of food.
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another agency with a small staff, the federal communication commission has donated more than 3,000 pounds so far. our top story at the bottom of the hour, we're just now one week away from reaching the federal government's borrowing limit according to the treasury secretary. lawmakers continue to bicker over two existing proposals, president obama is urging what he calls a bigger balanced approach. tonight chief washington correspondent jim angle look at what some are saying about uncle sam's spending habits. >> reporter: the current debate against the president and congress latest skirmish in a long war against government spending. irrespective of what they agree to, it's the first step on a long march to restore fiscal sanity. >> reporter: the problem was this, tt spending 27% of gross product, 37% of gdp today and
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headed to 50% by 2038. one analyst say we're moving in the direction of a european style government with more people receiving benefits than paying taxes. >> today, 51% of working americans have no federal income tax liability. today, almost 70% of americans tack more out of the tax system than they actually pay in. >> that makes cutting spending difficult because people who don't have to pay for the benefits see no need to trim them. that's why economists argue most people should pay some taxes, if only a little. >> it makes them a lot more sympathetic for the government doing the reforms that we need to be safe going forward. >> some lawmakers say the budget cannot be balanced, as they put it on the backs of seniors and the poor. >> by cutting medicare and social security, senior citizens have worked all of their life, putting a good portion of their paycheck into a system that paid for the well-being of their parents and grandparents. >> but people haven't paid in nearly enough to cover the cost of the programs, social security and medicare would
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need 46 trillion dollars today to cover future payments. many democrats insist the wealthy should pay more in taxes, but that wouldn't come close to covering all the government's promises. >> based upon our current path. if we tried to solve the problem on taxes alone, we would have to double total federal taxes. >> so, the choices are stark. a european style government with high taxes or one like greece that promises benefits it can't pay for, or a paraphernal necessary process cutting pefts. and the postal service may close outlets, one in ten nationally. it's reviewing the status of 1400 offices. the agency lost 8 billion dollars last year. we will talk about today's developments in the debt dilemma with the fox allstars joining me, after the break. [ male announcer ] this...is the network -- a network of possibilities.
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>> i know the president would rather give speeches about our problems than resolve them, but he wasn't elected it talk about the united states, he was elected to lead it. >> reasonable republicans have been offering absolutely everything they've asked for, still they refuse to take yes for an answer because of the cadre of unreasonable tea party driven house republicans. >> bret: we're just getting word from our capitol hill producer, chat pergram on the house side speaker boehner's people are telling him they will have to rewrite the boehner proposal because as of this hour on this night they do not have the votes to pass it in the house of representatives. that's a breaking development right now. with that, we'll talk about what today's developments are and where this is heading with our panel. susan, the chief congressional krnt correspondent for the
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washington, and ab, we don't know more yet. if we get it in my ear, that's fairly significant. >> it is, of someone who is a member close with boehner today told me we're going to have 217 republicans which is right now in the house all you need to pass it. we're going to pass it without democrats and i asked if they're going to get the holdouts over the line and he said we'll tell them this is the best leverage we'll ever have and this is a way to deny the president something that he wants, a way to avert default and it's a way to avoid having to deal with democrats and this is why you have to rally around and at this point their numbers are not there and they're not going to be able to pass the bill in the form they wanted. we don't know at this point if they're going to make-- they were going to throw a balanced budget amendment vote. we don't know if they're going to make the bill more conservative or liberal.
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if they're going to be shopping for democratic votes, it's going to be a new plan altogether pretty much. because the democrats will make sure that it is and i think this is a -- i thought they'd take another 24 hours to admit this and push it into thursday. but this is a really, a sign that the members who refuse are dug in. >> bret: so the leverage, susan, that's the question. whether the house, if they can't get that bill through and they have to some mack whatever is -- stomach what's coming over from the senate, the other way. >> that's predictable, they're changing legislation to win votes. if you remember during the government shutdown fight a few months ago, they knew they were getting some democrats, they had more votes to play with. they can't do this, because the democrats in the house are pretty united against this and everybody is really taking their side on it. so the republicans have nothing to play with on the vote area so they need to change the legislation so it draws in more republicans as opposed to finding a way to moderate it to bring in more
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democrats. if they don't pass something on their own by this weekend, certainly republicans lose a lot of leverage they had even a week ago in this whole debate pan looking like a bill that really caters more toward the democrats. >> bret: i'm going to read a statement from boehner's spokesman from michael steel just coming in right now. quote, we're here to change washington, no more smoke and mirrors, no more phantom cuts. we promise that we will cut spending more than we increase the debt limit with no tax hikes and we will keep that promise. as we speak, congressional staff are looking at options to rewrite the legislation to meet our pledge. thises what can happen when you have an actual plan and submit it for independent review, which the democrats who run washington have refused to do. he's referencing there, the cbo, congressional budget office, came up with late tonight a scoring on the boehner bill and put that up, if we could. cbo estimates the legislation would reduce budget deficits by about 1.1 trillion between
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2012 and 2021. that's the first section of the boehner proposal. the second part, which would be done by a joint committee, charles, couldn't be scored because, obviously, you have to kind of hammer out what you're going to cut on entitlements. >> the boehner proposal is a great achievement and if the republicans in the house, a minority of them kill it, i think it will be suicidal. this is a moment of maximum leverage. this is a country where you cannot govern out of one house of the congress. the democrats have control of the presidency and the senate and the republicans have achieved a lot in the boehner proposal, you get only cuts, you get no tax hikes, you establish a new principle, never before that a debt limit willen increased with a matching amount of spending cuts, that's an achievement and you avoid the situation where if we end up not in default, but in disarray next week, the republicans are going to share a lousy
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economy, high unemployment which right now the president owns and the prize is to win the election in november. the only way you're going to really change the structure of government, have limited government is if you control the presidency and the congress. that can only happen in november. if you go over a cliff now with the president, and you get the blame as a republican, all of that is out the window and you're forfeiting a chance of actually changing america next year. >> bret: susan, a couple more things, chad is hearing from a good source that zero democrats have signed on to the current proposals, up there, and secondly, that the boehner folks are very worried about putting a bill on the floor tomorrow and having it fail during a market session. we saw that with tarp. when it affected the market and that they would be fearful of having the bill on the floor and then yanking it off during a market session, concerns, again, about what happened with the tarp bill. >> it's a safe move for the republicans right now.
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they don't have the votes for it. they should not put a bill on the floor that's going to fail or pull before the votes happen. that would be disastrous. the tarp situation where the dow, the stock market was dropping hundreds of points, fresh in the memories of members up there. they need a to come up with a plan that can pass if they went leverage going into the weekends. >> the phantom cuts, smoke and mirrors, what republicans say about senator reid's plan. so the chances of that passing in the house? >> probably nil. >> right, about you they share some provisions and it's likely in the end we see a compromise on some immediate appropriations cuts and dollar for dollar match with a debt increase, spending cuts. a commission, which i think is a terrible idea, but everyone is rallying behind, one more time try to cut entitlements because this town is littered with the skeletons of failed commissions as we know and we
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have three piled up right now. and then they would also include the mitch mcconnell senate minority leader procedural gimmick provision, you get, next time it's increased you get to vote against it because it would require a two-thirds refusal or disapproval by the congress, a number you wouldn't reach and that way, it's automatically increased. so in the end. you can meld the boehner and reid plan much as they're sticking to their own corners tonight. >> when we come back, i want to talk about what the press secretary said in this interview and what the president's position is of tonight. more on the debt battle when we return.
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>> our best estimate is august 2nd is very real and that nobody should be assuming that there's wiggle room
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beyond that. there's always the desire in washington to figure out where is the last minute, the last possible moment. august 2nd is real. >> there's enough money in the month of august to make sure that bondholders get paid, social security recipients get their check and the men and women who wear our uniform and protect our country get paid. >> the back and forth on august 2nd, the deadline, that the treasury department says will be the start of when the government can't pay its bills. now, the president last night asked for the american people to call lawmakers today, many offices did see that. they saw a lot of calls, but to give you some persrspective, according to the house administration office, the average calls per hour on a. >> a day, 20,000. today, 35,000 and there you see the health care debate, 50,000 per hour to congress during these times. we're back with the panel. charles, what about the white house press secretary tonight saying that the president is
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still pushing for a big plan, meaning this would be a 3 to 4 trillion dollar plan that would include tax revenues and entitlement reform? >> i think what jay is saying, is they're calculating that the boehner approach will not succeed. the reid plan will probably not get out of the senate even if it does die in the house. so by the end of the week, there's nothing on the table in congress. and remember, when you spoke with the speaker yesterday, he said, my offer to the president remains on the table. i haven't withdrawn it, he wasn't offering to go back into negotiations, twice bitten, he was not going for a third try, but it's on the table and carney said to you, the president's offers are still on the table and that extra amount of taxes that he tried to squeeze out of the speaker, which precipitated boehner's walking out. well, that can be negotiated
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away. >> bret: it wasn't an ultimatum is what he said. >> so what he's saying, going to withdraw it if he'll come back. now, that would be a hell of a chance on the part of boehner, but the president i think is calculating, and everything in the house and senate ends up in the white house again and we strike a grand deal. i think it's delusional, but that appears to be what they're saying. >> bret: susan. >> they've got nothing in the house, nothing in the senate. the last closest deal. the deal that boehner walked away from that added 400 million. if they put that back on the table and boehner said he was willing to go for it, and the president, that could be the last best chance they have and again, obama certainly it's in his favor to try to get ahead of this and be the one that strikes the beg big deal and get it back in his corner. >> bret: what about the big speech, a.b., and the reaction one day later and whether it
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changed any dynamics on capitol hill. >> i don't think it was meant for capitol hill. it wasn't going to change the mind of tea party backed freshmen in the house of representatives and the republican conference, it was meant to stay to the american people i've stayed at the table, i've been left at the altar, i'm the great compromiser, these people are holding the economy captive and we need to share the sacrifice, balanced approach, balanced approach, he kept repeating that. i think it was, you can call it a campaign speech if you want. it doesn't matter it was four days late. no one knew, no one except for us in this town knew about the reid plan and the boehner plan. >> bret: i would argue that viewers of special report have been paying attention. >> except for this, distinguished audience. >> wall street journal, maybe. >> i believe that a lot of people are focusing late and he had a chance in a prime time address to make the appeal for people who hadn't heard his pressers at 11:15 in the morning on a weekday about a balanced approach. i think charles is right, i think he's saying i'm sorry,
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trying it through jay carney and other ways to get boehner back to the table. >> i don't think that boehner can get back to the table and stand by revenues, i don't think the conference will let him. >> can he continue to be speaker if he did that? >> if he can't sell the boehner plan he's not going to sell the obama plan. i want to make one more remark on last night's speech. it went unremarked. i heard the president, a lot of democrats like to do, heaping praise on reagan and debt ceiling, quoting reagan he had increased the debt ceiling 18 times in your presidency. if you do the math that means the average length of increase of the debt limit was less than six months. and three minutes later, obama is denouncing the republicans and the boehner proposal because it's six months which is unconscionable, irresponsible and reckless, in fact, his argument, that he will veto the boehner bill is
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because he says it creates instability in the markets, it's so short. in fact, instability and the downgrade in the markets will occur because of all of this reckless spending, but i'm surprised that nobody in the white house is able, actually, to divide eight by 18. >> bret: not to mention the debt, the credit situation, that likely because of the debt situation is going to get downgraded anyway. >> yeah, it's a debt and it's not the debt light and the ceiling. >> bret: that's it for the panel. stay tuned to see one last appeal for a debt ceiling increase. motorcycles, boats, even rv's. nobody knows where he got his love for racing. all we know is, it started early. casey mears, driver of the number thirteen geico toyota camry. geico, saving people money on more than just car insurance.
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freestyle lite test strips. call or click today. >> bret: finally tonight the administration has tried a lot of things to get the congress to raise the debt ceiling. well, now, it may have come to this. >> no medicare that's just absurd. every single penny have you heard. no moral objection. no kind of complaint. statutory budget restraint ♪ raise the debt ceiling ♪ r